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11 votes

Why was Amaterasu so angered by the flayed horse that Susanoo threw at her?

It wasn't the flayed horse that Amaterasu-ōmikami was offended by, per se. According to the kojiki (古事記), what happened was that Susano'o flayed a beautiful spotted horse and threw it into a room ...
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7 votes
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Japanese Trickster Demons

Tengu (天狗) A lot of my knowledge about them comes from the oral tradition, but the Wiki makes an interesting point that they were originally regarded as demons in the Buddhist context. In the Shinto ...
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4 votes

What is the Japanese human origin myth?

The Kojiki of Shinto states the origins of mankind as an action of Izanami-no-Mikoto: Izanami started his cleansing rites and in doing so he created the Goddess of the seas and the Goddess of the ...
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4 votes

What is the Japanese human origin myth?

The Yamata no Orochi (八岐大蛇) is actually ‘the flood myth’ of Japan. The 8 heads of Orochi are actually 8 rivers. Can’t remember the source, will update again if possible.
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4 votes

How were sun-showers viewed?

The Wyandot Indians have an origin myth for sun showers. Then the Thunder spoke again to the young woman and said,  "I have now taken him along with me, and whenever it rains while the sun is ...
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3 votes

Can kitsune die/be killed?

One belief is that when a kitsune changes shape, its hoshi no tama holds a portion of its magical power. Another tradition is that the pearl represents the kitsune's soul; the kitsune will die if ...
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3 votes

What is the meaning behind Amaterasu-ōmikami meaning what it does?

Re: Why "august" It's a function of translation into European languages. It comes from the Latin usage: augustus and was a title employed initially by Octavian, who was deified after his death. I'm ...
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3 votes
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Why did Izanami speaking first cause her and Izanagi bad luck with procreation?

This legend is found in the Kojiki, the oldest "history book" from Japan. The original text makes the reason quite plain: because Izanami is a woman. 告其妹曰「女人先言、不良」 . . . 「因女先言而不良」 He then told ...
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2 votes
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Do the gods Ameteratsu and Inari have any consorts?

Amateratsu is traditionnaly the spouse of her very own brother Tsukuyomi. You can check Wikipedia. In case of Inari he was married with Ukemochi and after Tsukuyomi slain her he married Mitama (Uga-no-...
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2 votes

Is there a Japanese equivalent to the three fates?

Not really. Although Shinto rituals involve giving thanks with the implication that giving thanks will bring good things in the future, fate as we generally define it is a novel idea in Japanese ...
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2 votes

What else was done to Amaterasu?

Initially, Susanoo ruled the Takama no Hara (High Celestial Plain) with his sister Amaterasu but from the very beginning, Susanoo caused trouble by destroying forests and mountains and killing local ...
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2 votes

Are there any female heroines in Shinto mythology?

Amaterasu or Amaterasu-ōmikami is one of the major deities in the animistic Shinto religion of Japan; her full name means “Great Divinity Illuminating Heaven.” One of the world’s few female solar ...
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2 votes

What is the significance of soy beans in the Japanese custom of Setsubun?

As you know, the highlight of the ritual is throwing beans at the oni. This specific activity is known as mame (魔滅), meaning "to destroy the demon" (魔を滅する, ma wo mes suru). Alternatively, mame can ...
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2 votes

Is there a kami of Aokigahara?

In essence, Shinto states that Kami are elements of the landscape, forces of nature, spirits of the dead, roads, tools, anything really - there are over 300 categories of Kami according to Shinto ...
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1 vote

If the ox tiger is an unlucky direction, why build an entrance to it?

The article on Wikipedia gives as examples of temples with Kimon facing north-east: Enryaku-ji Kan'ei-ji These temples are deliberately constructed for the Kimon to face the nearby (Capitol) city, ...
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1 vote

Why 1000 years and not 900 or 800 years for kitsune to ascend to heaven?

The Japanese tales are an adoption of Chinese mythology's húli jīng (狐狸精), appearing in a collection of tales from the Warring States, the Shan Hai Jing (山海經). The life span of the creature is only ...
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1 vote

What is the extent of control over a kitsune?

If the fox has a "ball" in it's mouth it is actually the female incarnation of a fox. The male fox incarnation has a parchment or key in his mouth. The "ball" is actually the ...
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1 vote

Human become Kami in death if they possess the qualities of Kami in life. Kami have both good and evil qualities. What does this mean?

I don't have sufficient depth of knowledge of Shinto to definitively answer from that perspective, but the virtues (and vices) will surely reflect cultural mores. There may be an element similar to ...
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